Month: February 2014

Chelsea Handler Handles Sexism

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To appreciate Chelsea Handler, you have to have what some might call an “inappropriate” sense of humor.  Thankfully, I do.  As the only woman on television right now with her own late night show (Chelsea Lately, on E!), Chelsea is someone I look up to professionally (although we have different opinions on what a reasonable serving of vodka is).  So, I’m proud to hear of her sticking up for herself as a woman in a male-dominated field. (more…)

I’m excited to read…

B.J. Novak’s new book!  He recently released a collection of short stories called One More Thing: Stories and Other Stories.  Check out his hilarious promotional video featuring one of my favorite television writers and actresses, Mindy Kaling:

The pair worked on The Office together and have an on-again off-again relationship but a permanent best-friend-ship, so they’re great fun to watch together.

Catch Mindy on her show The Mindy Project!  The series doesn’t return until April so you have a couple of months to get caught up.

Why should you read (and write) short stories?

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Short stories take a lot of heat as a literary form.  Infrequent readers of fiction might find them to be an “easy way out” of writing something longer or complain that a story’s brief plot line would be better if it were extended into a novel. As far as good short stories go, this isn’t the case.

In writing short stories, the first challenge is to give the reader a complete story (although some details may be left ambiguous as a creative choice) in a brief format.  I guess that’s pretty obvious from the name, though.  The second challenge is to use brevity to one’s advantage and control what’s left unsaid.  The best short stories I’ve read have left me with more questions than answers at the end.  They haven’t told me what to think, yet I still take away a message.  I’ve connected more to characters who appear for a single scene in a short story than to characters around whom an entire novel is based.

Check out a few of my favorite stories and collections after the jump: (more…)

Some Valentine’s Day Insight

What to Listen to: Bruce Springsteen

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Bruce performing in DC in September 2012.

No playlist is complete without at least a few of the Boss’s hits.  I have my parents to thank for introducing me to Bruce’s music, which I used to sing along to before I even knew what the lyrics meant.  At a very spry 64, Springsteen is still a force to be reckoned with on stage – running and jumping while belting both hits and deep cuts from his impressive catalog.  I saw him perform in the summer of 2012 in Boston, and the following fall in DC and couldn’t have enjoyed the shows more!  The energy and camaraderie among fans makes for a for an exciting and memorable experience. (more…)

What does it mean to be a feminist today?

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This isn’t one of those posts where I present a question in the title then provide you with a neat answer once you read along.  In fact, the answer is far from neat – I can hardly begin to tackle it.  Let’s start with a quick definition before I lose any readers.  To me, a feminist is a person who believes in the equality of women and men and one who doesn’t shy away from addressing or recognizing the instances of inequality that regularly affect our society. (more…)

What to Watch: Breaking Bad

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We really can’t go any further as friends until you’ve seen all five seasons of AMC’s dramatic masterpiece.  For now, I’ll suggest some of the “can’t miss” episodes that we can chat about later – once you’re all caught up, of course.

Season 1: Episode 7 “A No-Rough-Stuff-Type Deal”
Season 2: Episode 8 “Better Call Saul”
Season 3: Episodes 12 & 13 “Half Measures” & “Full Measure”
Season 4: Episode 14 “Face Off”
Season 5: THE ENTIRE SEASON